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The State Department web site below is a permanent electronic archive of information released online from January 1, 1997 to January 20, 2001. Please see www.state.gov for current material from the Department of State. Or visit http://2001-2009.state.gov for information from that period. Archive sites are not updated, so external links may no longer function. Contact us with any questions about finding information. NOTE: External links to other Internet sites should not be construed as an endorsement of the views contained therein.
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Assignment Process

The Department of State operates an open assignments system designed to provide all members of the Foreign Service with information on all positions within the Foreign Service that will be vacant during a specific timeframe. The purpose of this system is to ensure that all specialists have the chance to compete openly with their peers for vacancies.

Specialists who are eligible to be transferred receive a list of upcoming vacancies for which they may compete. Specialists then must submit a "bid list," a list of those positions for which they would like to be considered. Bid lists must be completed in accordance with guidelines set by the Department. These guidelines often require specialists to bid on positions in hardship posts and to bid on positions in more than one geographic region.

Specialists also are invited to submit comments regarding the choices on their bid list. Specialists may wish to be assigned to certain posts for health, family, professional or other reasons. The Department of State attempts to provide career-enhancing opportunities to its Foreign Service Specialists and to consider individual assignment needs. Should a mutually agreeable position for the employee not be available, however, the Department ultimately will decide where the employee's skills and qualifications are most needed. All vacancies must be filled, and all Foreign Service Specialists must be assigned.

The Department of State is committed to equal opportunity and fair and equitable treatment for all without regard to race, color, national origin, sex, religion, age, sexual orientation, disabling condition, political affiliation, marital status, or prior statutory, constitutionally protected activity.


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